We welcome Daniela Tover,  our new
Sunday morning nursery caregiver.

See more below.

The Eighth Sunday after Pentecost
August 4th
King Solomon asks God for wisdom,
engraving, Gustav Dore, 1866

7:30 a.m. Morning Prayer

8:00 a.m. Low Mass (Rite I)

Nursery available, 8:45 a.m.

9:00 a.m. Sung Mass

11:00 a.m. Solemn High Mass

This Week at Ascension + July 31, 2019

From the Rector
Feast of St. Mary the Virgin
Also From the Rector
First Sunday Rosary
This Sunday at Ascension
The Parish Prayer List
Approved Vestry Minutes Online
The Last Word

The Bishop Search and Our Diocese

"I, the Teacher, when king over Israel in Jerusalem,
applied my mind to seek and to search out ... wisdom ."
   - Ecclesiastes 1:12

Dear people of Ascension,

   The appointed Scriptures for this coming Sunday begin with King Solomon and his quest for wisdom. How apropos as the search accelerates for a 13th Bishop of the Diocese of Chicago. Our next Bishop will certainly need the proverbial wisdom of Solomon, as will those now entrusted with the search and nomination process.

   The truest and most timely wisdom is sometimes uttered by a solitary prophet. At other times, the best wisdom is collective, an aggregate of many experiences and insights. With this latter type in mind, I encourage your participation in the Listening Session that has been planned by the Bishop Search & Nominating Committee and to be held here at Ascension a week from tomorrow, August 8, from 7:00 - 8:30 p.m. Or find another session in which you can better take part on the list shown here.

     Some of you may prefer to think of Ascension as an outlier parish. Others may recall times when, as you see it, the parish was poorly served by the Bishop or his staff. Why bother with the diocese? Without diminishing these views, let's not lose sight of the fact that Ascension's most prosperous and enduring epochs have been those during which relations with the Bishop and diocese have been harmonious.

     Some of you will also be aware that the Anglo-Catholic traditions and faith that once formed the bedrock of our diocese can no longer be taken for granted. Our parochial presence at these hearings is an important way for us to say: "We're still here! We continue to cherish kneeling and the sacraments and ..." But let me not put words in your mouth. Let me ask you to show up and listen prayerfully and share faithfully about your own faith and your own hopes for our next Bishop and our diocese.

Feast of St. Mary the Virgin 
Also known as Feast of the Assumption (among other titles)
Thursday, August 15, 2019

Ascension's Crowning of Mary window

Blessing of Herbs, Procession and Solemn High Mass at 7:00 p.m.  Followed by a festive Reception in the Garden  (weather permitting, or otherwise in St. Michael Hall.)

The reception will be hosted by those taking part in the re-forming of the Society of Mary here at Ascension. If you can help with the reception (regardless of SOM affiliation) or if you want to know more about the Society of Mary and membership/participation, please contact parishioner George Pineda. The Society of Mary website may be viewed here.


More and Other News on the Bishop Search and the Diocese of Chicago

¬ Father Bob Petite, Assisting Priest at Ascension, has been asked to serve as Chaplain to the Bishop Search and Nominating Committee. I know that he will safeguard the committee's confidentiality, but also hope he will occasionally share with us some of the thoughts and questions that arise through his participation. Please pray for Fr. Petite and all involved in the search.

¬ Please let me know by Sunday if you are able to help with hospitality for the August 4 Bishop Search Listening Session.

¬ Parishioner Jim Lenz and his wife Sue recently took part in what was dubbed The Big Provincial Gathering , a large coming together of clergy and laity from throughout the Great Lakes region of the Episcopal Church. The event resulted in part from a recent reorganization of the Province with new leadership. I regret I didn't know about the opportunity or Jim's participation in advance ... nor did I know until just now that Province V has its own website, which you can view here! Thank you, Jim, for all the ways you serve and take part in the life of the larger church.

¬ Registration is now open for the 2020 pre-Lenten men's retreat for the diocese, which I've been asked to lead. It seems strange to be promoting a February retreat in July! But apparently the retreat has a regular annual cycle of communications, and apparently the event typically fills up long before February. You may view the event flyer here, and I'm of course happy to field any related questions.

Please join me in welcoming Daniela Tovar, our new Sunday nursery care provider. She is pursuing a degree in Elementary Education at DePaul, has extensive experience as a nanny and worked with pantry and clothing programs for the homeless while earning her AA degree at Chicago's Truman College. Daniela is a native of Colombia and speaks both English and Spanish. Even if you're not a parent, please introduce yourselves to and welcome Daniela to Ascension during the month of August.

Let me add my thanks here to Cheryl Peterson , for her advocacy, leadership and perseverance in filling the nursery care position and to DiAnne Walsh who, along with Cheryl, recently interviewed Daniela. They reported, " We were both impressed with her love of children and her dedication to the field of teaching ."

Ascension may again be participating in the October 19-20 citywide Open House Chicago , thanks to leadership and interest by our Senior Warden, Cynthia Perrizo, and a number of other parishioners. Ascension has been featured in this annual event a number of times in the past, most recently in 2016. You can read about Open House Chicago here. After we learn if we've been accepted as a participant (based on an application due today!), I'll be asking for your help in making it a great event and a great opportunity for Ascension.

Those nearly 500 reed pipes presently missing from our pipe organ are being well cared for at Berghaus Pipe Organ Builders , Bellwood, IL. Someone asked me if it was still OK to make a financial contribution toward Phase II of the organ restoration. YES! Please do! You may get a check or pledge card to the church at any time or use the link on the parish website.

Meanwhile, I trust your calendars are marked for the afternoon of September 29 , our Michaelmas Celebration at which we'll welcome the Bishop for ... a shining constellation of worship and moments that you'll want to keep track of as details come into focus in coming weeks.

Thank you to all who have inquired of and assured me of prayers for my mother, Loisjean . She is still hanging on in hospice care in her own apartment in Santa Rosa, CA, but it appears the end is near. Being out there with her for most of four days last week was a blessing, and I'm grateful for the good spirit and collaboration among my four siblings (three in Northern California, one in Seattle) in taking turns being present with her. Here's a pic from a visit I made to her less than two years ago. She was still getting on and riding her bicycle at the time, at age 90!

I know I'm not alone in wanting to thank the Sisters of St. Anne for the open house and generous, lovely luncheon in conjunction with our Commemoration of St. Anne on Sunday. My thanks as well to parishioners who joined me and others at the convent. I do believe we had a larger crowd than in recent years. Thanks be to God. 

Best wishes to Jay and Cheryl Peterson, leaving tomorrow for England with the Christ Church, Winnetka, Choirs, for which Jay serves as Assisting Organist. They're headed to a choir residency at Lincoln Cathedral, England ... and beyond.
Godspeed, Cheryl and Jay.

Please keep in your prayers the ministry and witness of our Presiding Bishop, the Most Rev. Michael Curry. As I've previously shared, he'll be taking part in a presentation this evening at St. James' Cathedral. The tickets have apparently long been sold out. I hope that one of our several Ascension members taking part will give you a brief report next week ...


The Rosary will be said this Sunday, August 4, 2019 at the Shrine of St. Mary the Virgin immediately following the 11 a.m. Solemn High Mass. Rosaries and booklets are both available from the Ushers. All are welcome and invited to participate.


The schedule of Sunday Readings, Celebrants, Preachers, Lectors, Acolytes, Ushers, Hymnody, Choral and Organ Repertoire for  Sunday, August 4, 2019  may be found by clicking here . More information on the Choral repertoire may be found by clicking here .


Please remember these people in your daily prayers
Geoffrey Wainwright, Fr. John Graham, Dorothy Murray, Mary Lou Devens, Michael Milano, Charley Taylor, August 'Augie' Alonzo, Ted Long, Jim Berger, Ethel Martin, Yuka Asai, Dean Pineda, Bazelais Suy, Carnola Malone, Charlene MacDougal, Pablo Illás, Doreen Finn, Donald Schmidt, Ted Saunders, Julie Schram, Loisjean Raymond Simmons, Don Wilber, Jacob Potter, Nathan, Claire, Enrique, Monica, Aleksander, Jim, Josephine Boitse, Sue Smedley, Gwendolyn
Prayers for the departed

Rest eternal grant unto them, O Lord: and let light perpetual shine upon them. May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.


The Approved Minutes of Vestry meetings are now available online to parishioners who request the link.  If you would like Internet access to the Approved Vestry Minutes, please email the  Church Office and request the link. 
Once you access the web page, you can read all recent Approved Vestry Minutes.  In addition, if you click on the subscribe button at the top right, you will be given email notice whenever a new set of Approved Minutes is added. 


Given the emphasis on our diocese at the top of this newsletter, I thought some of you may be interested to read or scan, below, the contents of the diocesan website page that explains the archives for the Diocese of Chicago. Look carefully enough and you'll find an indirect mention of Ascension by way of "the Father Arthur Ritchie case (1878-79)" ...
- Fr. Raymond

Richard R. Seidel Archives
The Richard R. Seidel Archives holds materials about the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of American's (now The Episcopal Church) beginnings in the Midwest, from the start of the nineteenth century. Organized in 1835 as the Diocese of Illinois (and comprising the entire state), the holdings of this diocese (reorganized as the Diocese of Chicago in 1877) reflect the settlement of church and society in rural, urban, and suburban settings. The collections for Chicago include pre-and post-fire documents, and especially of interest, the era of the Civil War. In addition, the Episcopal Church in Chicago pioneered the cathedral system of diocesan organization and installed the first American cathedral chapter in 1861 in what had been a parish church on the western border of the City of Chicago, becoming the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul, closed by a fire in 1921. A Pro-Cathedral was established in Evanston's St. Luke's parish, and finally, St. James, Chicago, became the Cathedral in 1955.
The collection is rich in nineteenth-century history, an era marked by church controversies, the rise of women's organizations and innovative new agencies reflecting the social Christian approach to industrial and urban crises. The shift from agricultural to industrial society is well documented in the minutes, correspondence, and financial reports of the diocese and in the Bishops' Papers beginning with Philander Chase (1835-1852) and his efforts to found Jubilee College, Peoria County, Illinois; the papers of Henry John Whitehouse (1852-1874) reveal controversies surrounding the Civil War, questions of the bishop's authority in the American church, and the 1869 trial of Charles E. Cheney, one of the break-away clergy in Chicago who was a founder, with others nationally, of the Reformed Episcopal Church. Whitehouse's papers include also the James W. Cracraft case in which the latter, a parish rector, spoke out from his pulpit on political matters during the Civil War, and was disciplined by the bishop.
The Richard R. Seidel Archives of the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago are housed in spacious and secure, climate-controlled quarters in the St. Jude League/Claretian Publications building at 205 West Monroe Street, in the heart of Chicago's Loop, and easily accessible by the CTA, Amtrak or Metra rail lines. Built by Chicago architecture firm Holabird and Roche in 1898, the building is also the repository for the archival collections of the Claretian Missionaries of North America, and the Cenacle order of Roman Catholic women religious.
The Episcopal Church's diocesan archives are stored in a room equipped with customized shelving; an office-library for the historiographer of the diocese completes the separate space. Shared space includes a reading room for visiting scholars and a processing area. Currently, the Episcopal archives has a vast, well-organized collection of more than 1,300 archival boxes on its shelves. There are 36 banker boxes of active parish records, and 340 banker boxes of unprocessed historical materials.
The historiographer has custody of the documents belonging to the diocese and keep as far as practicable, documents pertaining to the history of the diocese, and of its institutions, parishes, and missions. The Archives and Records Management Committee advises and supports the historiographer.
Because the diocesan archives does not maintain the records of active parishes and mission congregations, it is important that each congregation do so. The historiographer is available for consultations.
Bishop Henry John Whitehouse's tumultuous episcopate was followed by a series of elections of bishops that dramatically reveal the significance of the Midwest in the rise of the Anglo-Catholic party in the Church; information on the Ritualist controversies can be found in parish and diocesan records, including the bishop candidacies of George E. Seymour and James DeKoven in 1874, and the Father Arthur Ritchie case (1878-79). The election of William E. McLaren (1875-1905) ushered in a period of growth and, in keeping with the movement toward Anglo-Catholicism, was a period of great reception for renewal in the deaconesses and sisterhoods of worldwide Anglicanism. The archives have the rare records of the Order of Deaconesses and the Sisters of St. Mary and their work in this diocese. Women's religious orders are documented through the 20th Century. The records of the General Convention meeting in Chicago in 1886-whence came the Chicago Quadrilateral-was a defining moment in the national church. The records of the modern Catholic Movement include the Catholic Union of Chicago, the Catholic Congresses, the American Church Union Papers, and documents relating to talks on ecclesiastical relations with Eastern Orthodox, Old Catholic, Roman Catholic, Assyrian, and Polish National Catholic churches. Mid-twentieth century negotiations with the Roman Catholics, and agreements with the Lutherans during the episcopates of James Winchester Montgomery (1971-1987) and Frank Tracy Griswold, III, (1987-1998) are documented in their papers.
In the 19th Century the parish files of the congregations throughout the State of Illinois reflect the activism of community builders--men and women--who constructed civic and religious institutions and developed the economic and social fabric of the society. The Richard R. Seidel Memorial Archives houses parish records for parishes and missions in Illinois from the 1830s; materials include records of baptism, confirmation, marriage, death; parochial reports; vestry minutes, correspondence; biographical material; historical material; and photographs and architectural records. In addition, there are papers of men's and women's voluntary associations. The major collection is that of the Women's Auxiliary (now the Episcopal Church Women --ECW) from 1875 to the present. An important men's organization is the Brotherhood of Saint Andrew Papers (1884-1947); and the Church Club Papers (1874-1966).
The record is rich for city missionary work including record books from 1835, Cathedral and City Missions Newsletter (1908-1921), Town and Country Papers (1934-1965); Church Extension Papers, Metropolitan Affairs records, and the Canon Missionary Papers of the Rev. Tyndall, Archdeacon Deppen, and Canon David N. Harris all relate to parishes and missions. Social service and charitable institutions tell the story of the Church's engagement with immigrants and other newcomers; with social justice concerns; with rehabilitation and therapy; with orphans and the sick. The archives have the records of the following institutions and agencies/programs: Randall House; Benton House; Bishop Anderson House/Foundation; Cathedral Shelter; Chase House; Church Home for the Aged; St. Mary's Home for Children; St. Luke's Hospital; Chicago Home for Boys; Lawrence Hall; St. Leonard's House; St. Alban's'; Waterman Hall.

Fr. Patrick Raymond,         praymond@ascensionchicago.org

Susan Schlough,                finance@ascensionchicago.org

Parish Office                      office@ascensionchicago.org